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Opinion | Football concussion equipment needs further examination

Regarding Jerry Brewer’s Oct. 2 Sports column, “The NFL’s protocols didn’t save Miami QB”:

I am frustrated by the National Football League’s lack of concern about the repeated head injuries of its players. The injury sustained by Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was horrifying to witness and highlights the need for increased safety protocols.

This July, the league introduced the Guardian Cap, designed to give the wearer 10 percent additional protection from head injuries — 20 percent if two players colliding are both wearing the device. Though more head injuries happen to offensive and defensive linemen, tight ends and linebackers, Mr. Tagovailoa’s injury proved that they can happen to any player. Why not mandate these protective devices at all games? Is it because nearly 70 percent of players are African American? Would protocols be different if 70 percent of players were White? There are three Black head coaches in the NFL. More than 95 percent of owners are White, with no African American owners in the league’s 102-year history. When will White consumers of this sport stop using Black and Brown bodies as entertainment and insist players are provided with the protection they deserve?

Lori Carter, Indian Land, S.C.

As someone who experiences chronic post-concussion syndrome stemming from participation in contact sports, I can say that the medical convention that “once concussion symptoms dissipate, a victim is fine to resume play” without fear for their life is idiocy.

Because of the inability to image the brain damage from repeated hits, science really has no way to determine how much more vulnerable a player is to new hits after previous injuries. In the meantime, as well documented over the years in The Post, countless players face long-term grief from being reinjured, despite being cleared to return under the current protocols.



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